2 Factor Authentication

Hackers want your password and it can be exposed through a number of methods like phishing, a compromised computer or through a data breach at another service like LinkedIn.

Did you know we have a system available that will prevent people from accessing your Williams google account even if they know your password?

2-Factor Authentication - Something you know + Something you haveTwo-step authentication

(also referred to as two-factor, multi-factor authentication (MFA) or verification or 2FA) is basically just a way to ‘double lock’ your account. Instead of just having one level of security of ‘something you know’, like your username & password, it also requires ‘something you have’ that’s unique to only you, like your cell phone or a usb key. Together these 2 things prove that the person attempting to log onto your account is really you.  This way even if someone gets your password somehow they still can’t access your account since they don’t have your cell phone as well.

I’ve heard about 2-step but I’m concerned about access because I travel a lot.

There are many ways to receive the 2nd authorization.  Some of the ways don’t require a cell connection, or even a wifi connection.  You can use a text, Google prompt (works over cell or wifi), Google authenticator (an app on the phone that does not require any network connection at all), printed codes that you carry, or a USB key on a keychain.   Or Google can call a landline phone and leave the code there – with any computer on the internet you can then check voicemail and get it.   The important thing is to set it up so you have multiple options and in fact you can set it up with ALL the options, so if the first isn’t going to work you just move on to the next one.

Won’t 2-step slow me down when I log in?

A computer that you log in to once (like your office or home computer) can remember that you authenticated there previously and not ask for the 2nd authorization. It will recognize that it is a trusted or frequently used computer if you so choose. When logging in to a new computer the delay shouldn’t be more than 10 seconds (usually much less), especially with the multiple options listed above. Many people set up 2-step and then forget they have it on since they’re very rarely prompted for it.

How to enable 2-Step verification on your Williams e-mail account;

To sign up for 2 Step on your Williams e-mail account visit here https://myaccount.google.com/security .   You can have the 2nd authentication set up in a number of different ways including;

Although the text message is the most well known and the default setup, we recommend using the prompt method.  For anyone travelling internationally without a cell data plan you can easily use the prompt, app, list of codes or usb key method.

App Specific Passwords for Outlook and a few other mail programs

Google has a feature that creates unique App Specific Passwords for some applications. This feature will create a unique 16 character for each application you need access from. Once you enter this password you can forget it since you’ll never have to worry about again. 

You can cancel & revoke these passwords without having to modify your real password. This is especially handy for applications on your phone or other mobile device that might get lost or stolen, just revoke those passwords and no one can get to your mail, calendar etc from that device. For more information about this visit https://support.google.com/accounts/answer/185833?hl=en

imagesOther sites that use 2 Factor Authentication

Now that your William’s account is nicely secured, what about all the rest of your accounts on the internet? You’re in luck, many other popular websites like Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, PayPal and LinkedIn allow you to enable 2 Factor Authentication. In addition your bank & credit card providers probably offer this as well. See https://twofactorauth.org/ for a fairly comprehensive list of sites that offer this type of service.

For more information about 2 Factor authentication visit http://www.stopthinkconnect.org/campaigns/details/?id=460